Monday, April 27, 2009

The Joys of Craigslist

"Sorry, it is sold. But it was in perfect condition so unless you were thinking of painting it a different color, it didn't need refinishing. "

This was the response I received from a woman who I had emailed an offer to for a hutch. I offered less than the asking price (duh, don't we all?), and explained to her that the reason I offered less was because I was planning on refinishing costs as well.

I love how she thought I insulted her virgin oak-wood honor (circa 1993) by saying that.

Wouldn't a "Sorry, it is sold." have been sufficient?

Next time I won't reveal the sinister plans I have for their precious furniture.

Craigslisters. We're all insane.

Friday, April 24, 2009


1. Take-out noodles from favorite Vietnamese joint.

2. Comfy pajamas.

3. Good conversation with chopsticks at the dinnertable:

Lily: "Daddy, shoo, how wos your luckee day?"
("Daddy, so, how was your lucky day?" - don't ask me why she adds "lucky"...what can a I say, the darling is a bubbly optimist.)

Ty: "It was good Lu."

Lily: "You don't got no monshters in your car too-day?" (You don't have any monsters in your car today?)

Ty: "Nope, no monsters today."

Lily: "Oooh, goood."

London: "Baaa baaa gishy gishy du daa daaa daaa."

4. Baths. Much needed baths.

5. Bedtime for the girls followed by cuddling and watching new favorite TV series on DVD (that we're obsessed with) while eating oreos together.

Life doesn't get better than this. I'm sure of it.

Happy weekend. Goodnight.

Thursday, April 23, 2009

Musical words

"There was a steaming mist in all the hollows, and it had roamed in its forlornness up the hill, like an evil spirit, seeking rest and finding none. A clammy and intensely cold mist, it made its slow way through the air in ripples that visibly followed and overspread one another, as the waves of an unwholesome sea might do. It was dense enough to shut out everything from the light of the coach-lamps but these its own workings, and a few yards of road; and the reek of the laboring horses steamed into it, as if they had made it all."

Charles Dickens, A Tale of Two Cities

Mmmmmm. I love good words like I love a warm bowl of simmering soup on a cold day or fresh fruit on a hot one.
There are moments in music, any kind of music, when the notes and sound reach directly into your heart...your soul is touched. It was just right. It was truth, in music, and you felt it. A good author masters the truth of words just as a good composer understands the truth of sounds, all strung together to create a new reality for your senses to dive into. I loved this paragraph. I felt like I was there.


Whoa. Dude. That was like. ..tooootally. deep.

Tuesday, April 21, 2009

All in the contract...

Lily: "Mommy, I dus love a boy-ee." (Mommy, I just love a boy.)

"Yes Lu, you love your Daddy."

"No, dus anoder boy." (No, just another boy.)

"Nooooooo you don't."

"Yesssssh I doooooo."

"What boy?"

"Ni ko lasss." (Nicholas. 17 year-old cousin who lives in Utah)

"Okay, I guess." (At least he lives far away.)

"I dus going to kiss a boy-ee."


"No no no no no, you only kiss your Daddy."

This is what I call a great example of the fine-print of parenthood. Anytime Tyler starts freaking out and getting uncomfortable because Lily is doing some anatomical exam in the bathtub or begins asking about kissing I have to remind him, "Dear...this is the fine-print section in the contract when you signed up to be a parent. Nobody directly alerts you and commands you to read it before you sign, but it's there. It's like that forty paragraph section on Craigslist or Ebay that you scroll through quickly without reading, and click I Agree."

The fine print refers to anything to do with body parts, functions, feelings, and general future explanations of the birds and the bees. The fine print refers to zealously monitoring your child and other playmates during pre-school recess to make sure no "doctor" games are occurring. The fine print refers to any other necessary parental task that induces total heeby jeebies, makes you want to crawl into a hole and plead to your spouse, "You handle this."

Tyler and I have a deal:

He'll handle the boy stuff.

I'll take care of the girl stuff.

But... I may never have sons. That would be sooo not fair.

Saturday, April 18, 2009

The skinny

I had to turn in my Get Out of Fat-Jail Free card. London is officially weaned and has been for a little over two months. When I breastfeed, I am emotionally even-keeled, my skin clears up, and I can eat for days without the scale budging. It's about the only good thing that happens to my body from the point of conception. After months of pregnant vomiting, water retention, acne, swollen feet, stretch marks, and strange brown blotches above my upper lip, I figure the post-partum breastfeeding phase when I can eat what I want and strangely NOT gain weight is God's last attempt at trying to prove that He's not the blood-sucking mastermind of misery that I had been referring to him as when looking at photos of myself in the delivery room.

But it's over. Oh dear, it's over. I am always strangely ambivalent about the weaning phase. Glad to get my body and sleep back, but also sad about cashing in my skinny ticket and formerly plump and voluptuous upper deck. Now, instead of lying awake at night feeding a baby, I am tossing and turning, dreaming of reconstructive
surgery while searching for my breasts that are now folded somewhere in my armpits, dreading the morning weigh in.

I'm no good at this cautious dieting. It follows the usual cyclical format:

1. Begin morning with aspirations of fitness and health after upsetting weigh in.
2. Attempt some form of workout.Feel sexy and powerful.
3. Eat something boring and lame for breakfast (like yogurt).
4. Attend to the rest of the day until lunch, when I'm famished, and jealous of my children's chicken nugget eating festivities. They don't even realize how lucky they are.
5. Eat my boring and lame turkey sandwich without chips, staring at London in her high chair, hoping she will accidentally drop a nugget or french fry on the floor so I can "clean it up".
6. Continue rest of day unsatisfied as beginnings of obsession about dinner time set in.
7. Starvation infiltrates stomach.
8. Anger over starvation.
9. Begin cooking dinner.
10. Eat everything in site in the pantry WHILE cooking dinner.
11. Overeat dinner.
12. Admit failure and surrender and finish night polishing off THREE Dark chocolate Sprinkles cupcakes and glass of whole milk.

Next day:

1. Repeat from step one.

This is a relatively accurate snapshot of most days. SO..I've decided to break the cycle. I think you'll be proud of me. After writing down my general patterns, I see my weak points. I'm ready for change. Real change.

I'm excited to announce I have reconstructed my life:

This morning I began with the cupcakes.

Thursday, April 16, 2009

Wednesday, April 15, 2009

Tax Day Tea Parties

"We all declare for liberty; but in using the same word we do not all mean the same thing. With some the word liberty may mean for each man to do as he pleases with himself, and the product of his labor; while with others, the same word may mean for some men to do as they please with other men, and the product of other men's labor. Here are two, not only different, but incompatible things, called by the same name - liberty. And it follows that each of the things is, by the respective parties, called by two different and incompatible names - liberty and tyranny."

Abraham Lincoln, 1864

* And no, this isn't going to be a political blog, so don't worry. But Mark Levin's book was a good read.

Tuesday, April 14, 2009


Scene: Shopping in some random mall in Utah.

Year: 2002ish

Ryan (Uncle...really more like a cousin. Only 3 years older than me.):

"Do you think in the next life we're going to be held accountable for that fact that we are fully aware that there are literally people starving in the world at this present moment and we are shopping for useless luxuries?"

Me (bothered, eyes rolling, frustrated that he's just taken an ignorantly blissful shopping trip past the point of no accountability return):

"Why do you have to do that? Why?!!! Ruin a perfectly good shopping trip with some ridiculously meaningful question like that?!"

P.A.D.T.!!! P.A.D.T.!!! P.A.D.T.!!!!

People Against Deep Thoughts.
It's got a nice ring to it, doesn't it?

Ryan and I formed this club around the same time. Whenever we would veer into the realm of never-ending topics like politics, religion, homosexuality, why good food makes you fat, science, healthcare, philosophy, and uni-brows - somebody, after hours and hours of migraine inducing thought had to pull us out of the funk. One of us would inevitably sense the bottomless pit of contemplation coming on, and politely shout: "P.A.D.T.!!"

"Oh, sorry! I almost forgot. Let's go watch Saved By the Bell re-runs and binge on Oreos."


There. Problem solved.*
(*Aside from the slight detour Ryan eventually took becoming a volunteer in third world countries and creatingthe non-for-profit organization Green Eyes in Africa - click here and student Emmy award winning documentaries. Needless to say, he was impeached as President of P.A.D.T. for a time.)

As I get older, I am increasingly feeling the urge to retreat into the P.A.D.T. clubhouse. Maybe it's because as I get older I also feel an increasing sense of duty to start paying attention and would like to avoid it. And yet as I look at my children and have to carve my own way in the now very merciless world, the pressure to grow up urges on. The pressure to graduate P.A.D.T. To move out of the old "parent's house" of irresponsibility and ignorance when it comes to all things political, financial, moral, educational, etc, etc. Don't get me wrong, I pay attention when it directly impacts me....but beyond that I can't honestly say I lose any sleep at night for anyone else. Ryan's original thought while shopping in the mall does begin to beg the question, "Isn't it time to start giving a hang?"

I've been on a mini quest of sorts. To start getting involved. Maybe volunteer. Pay attention and read. Understand not only national, but local political processes so I can make informed decisions. Maybe hold a protest of some sort on the steps of the Capitol (not sure what for yet). Stop acting like it is uncool or beneath me to care more about family values than what is happening in People magazine. Quit asking my Dad for information about America and read it myself. Stand up for what is good, and right. ( I even pathetically had to ask my Dad last night to rehash the different branches of government, from Federal to State. It's that sad. I didn't really know for sure. And don't lie, you probably don't either. I'm going to guess that 85% of my readers and Americans don't. And yes, this is sad, people.)

I watched a short documentary a while back on George Romney (influential politician and businessman, father of recent Presidential candidate Mitt Romney). He was a respected leader and successful in about every aspect of his life: family, business, name it. But he believed most strongly in volunteerism. On the idea that communities could solve their own problems. If everyone would pitch in just a little, there would be no need for big bailouts, huge government programs, etc. etc. Later, Mitt Romney's campaign also presented the truthful reality that America will only be as strong as its families (Boy, I wish he could have won. Sigh).

Today, so many are nervous about the economy and the direction of America's future. I have more complaints and frustrations than I'd care to list. But, at the end of the day....what have I done? Where have I helped?
If I don't help, if I don't do, then I shouldn't complain. I'm already working on the strong family thing, but there is so much more.

P.A.D.T. must be shelved for the time being, it's time to get involved.

Now I've even blogged about it. It's once again past the point of no accountability return.

I think I might go to the big Tea-Party tomorrow.

Thursday, April 9, 2009

Happy Birthday to...


It began with dewy, fresh sod for the backyard being delivered in the a.m. (thanks Dad, I still can't believe it - neither can Tyler, as he happily laid each lovely roll while whistling and peeked out of our windows every 5 minutes for the next 7 consecutive hours).
Followed by freshly delivered favorite ginormous crumb donut from Klunkers. Kisses and sweet "Happy Buwday Mommy" messages from girlies. A few phonecalls, some singing voicemails (Ian & Forrest duet was definitely one for the "save" button). Took the girls to playgroup for a fun easter egg hunt.

Then enjoyed a lovely lunch with some favorite ladies. New pretty things to unwrap, Rachael Ray magazine subscription, and sour cream chocolate cake at Arlington Gardens.

I love my birthday.

Tyler thinks I take it to the extreme. Not true. There are no extremes on birthdays. So when I ask for a continuous birthday footrub, refuse to get my own glass of water, and prefer to be graciously carried from room to room because I'm too delicate and tired to walk myself, all while lovingly referring to you as "Birthday slave T", just get to work on a payback list for your birthday next year. I'm all game.

It ended late tonight with me next to Tyler snoring soundly after a long effort in making sure my day was special. What a guy. I decided to get online and blog for my last 29 minutes of birthday indulgence. Before he fell asleep we sang a medley of songs* from Lily & London's Winnie the Pooh book before tucking them into bed, all cuddled together in blankets.
(*more of a screech/talk medley that I've mentioned before. Tyler is talking the words, I'm screeching them, Lily and London are soaking them up in pure enjoyment. For real.)

Tyler sweetly remarked, "We should do this everyday."

I couldn't agree more.

Unfortunately, I don't think he was referring to the birthday portion.